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You Never Gnome Where They Will Be: Gnome Hunt 2017

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The Center for Student Engagement will host The Great Gnome Hunt starting Monday, April 3. The quest is a scavenger hunt in search of decorated gnomes. The game will go on until the last gnome is found.

Nearly 20 campus organizations are responsible for decorating and hiding the gnomes. Groups like CAB, Go Saints, Association of Black Collegians, Latino Student Union and Connect are participating in the hunt. This is only the second year for the hunt so many groups are getting involved. More than 10 new groups are participating for the first time. Best Buddies, H.E.R.O.S. and Pawprint are painting and hiding gnomes for the first time.

Pawprint staff members decorate their gnome. Photo courtesy of Jordan Coker.

Throughout the hunt, each organization will release hints on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to guide students closer to hiding spots. Gnome hunt coordinator, Sam Martin, said, “It was fun to see students dart across campus when a new clue was released.”

“The goal is mostly about getting students to follow social media accounts,” Martin said. She hopes to increase the connection between students and organizations on campus through the hunt.

Sophomore Shayna Salloway participated in the gnome hunt last year. She looked for gnomes “anywhere and everywhere.” Salloway said, “I looked in the library, on the trails, I pretty much looked everywhere, but I couldn’t find them.”

“I looked for forever. At least for two hours a day for a good two weeks,” Salloway said. The hiding spots may be hard to find, but all gnomes were found last year. It took nearly two weeks for the gnome hidden by Go Saints to be found last year.

“I’m excited because it will be a break from homework and stress,” Salloway said. “It gives me and my friends a chance to hang out and talk.”

Salloway is eager for the hunt to start, and she plans to search all around campus. She wants to start her search in the library. She hopes to find the gnome hidden by C.O.N.N.E.C.T. or Go Saints.

Students can look for gnomes throughout the entire campus. Groups will be hiding gnomes anywhere on campus. “As long as it’s not behind locked doors, they [the gnomes] can be hidden anywhere,” Martin said.

Decorated gnomes are ready to be hidden. Photo courtesy of Tanner Butler.

Some gnomes will be easy to find and some gnomes will be nearly impossible. Each campus organization decides how hard it will be to find their gnome. They can give great clues or no clues at all. Be sure to follow different organizations on Facebook and Twitter to see clues.

Once a student finds a gnome, they should bring the gnome to the Center for Student Engagement, located in the DUC. There, the finder will receive a prize. Some of the prizes this year include a hammock, Bluetooth speaker and wireless headphones.

If you need a break from schoolwork and would like to go on an adventure, get outside and join in on the Great Gnome Hunt of 2017. You never know how long the hunt will last, so get started early. Happy hunting!
Did you find the Maryville Pawprint gnome? Tweet us a picture at @MvillePawprint

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